Saturday, September 24, 2011

World Championship road racing opens with U23 men and junior women

Gavion Mannion rides near the front of the U23 men's road race.
The road racing portion of the 2011 UCI Road World Championships opened in Copenhagen on Friday without a medal for the United States. Five of the country’s top under 23 men raced strong, but came up short in the sprint as did a trio of junior women.

U23 Men’s Road Race

Despite 168-kilometers of aggressive racing in the U23 men’s affair the peloton ultimately would not break apart. A strong Australian team led the field into the final sprint, but it was the French duo of Arnaud Demare and Adrien Petit who dominated the long, uphill sprint. All five Americans finished with the group.

“All the (American) boys rode a really good race,” explained Marcello Albansani, USA Cycling’s U23 Development Program Director. “They were always there; just lost the sprint. Each of them did what they needed to do. If you race that well you should get a result.”

In the long sprint to the finish Jacob Rathe (Portland, Ore./Garmin-Chipotle) was the top American finisher in 87th.

“It was a wide bunch going in (to the finish),” explained Rathe. “There were a few disruptions and near-crashes and it was definitely a disappointing sprint for us. I think we didn’t quite save it for the end.”

Robert Bush(Louisville, Ky./Kentucky Flyers-Texas Roadhouse) and Gavin Mannion (Dedham, Mass./Trek-Livestrong) helped lead Rathe to the finish and crossed the line in 92nd and 93rd respectively. After helping patrol the front for much of the race Ian Boswell (Bend, Ore./Trek-Livestrong) was 127th and Joe Dombrowski (Marshall, Va./Trek-Livestrong) 128th.

“It was fast and aggressive, but it went well for us until the end,” said Mannion. “I tried to get Jacob up to the front, but fell out of position.”

Junior Women’s Road Race

Addyson Albershardt finished 42nd in a large, aggressive junior women's road race. Crashes marred the 70-kilometer junior women’s road race, with only two of the three American women finishing the race in the bunch sprint. All first-year juniors, Addyson Albershardt (Matthews, N.C./FLYING PIGS) and Alexis Ryan (Ventura, Calif./Team TIBCO II) finished 41st and 43rd in the uphill sprint to the finish.

A crash on the second of five laps on the 14-kilometer circuit took Grace Alexander (Boise, Idaho/BYRDS) down just as the first serious attack went of the front. The 17 year-old did not give up however until her derailleur hanger snapped on lap three.

“I would have like to have finished the race for the experience, but there were no more support cars behind us at that point,” explained Alexander who was working with a small group to try and chase back on.

Ryan and Albershardt were able to make it through the crashes and held strong in the field in an aggressive junior women’s race. An Italian and a German rider were able to form a break in the final lap, but the field quickly closed in leaving Ryan jockeying for position on the uphill sprint.

“There was a break up the road so it was really hard to get to the front with all the chaos,“ said Ryan. “I made it up to the front but it was right when the break was caught and I got sort of boxed in. That’s when they launched the sprint and my legs were just toast.”

British rider Lucy Garner won the sprint to take the world title just ahead of silver-medalist Jessy Druyts of Belgium.

Coming up

The junior men’s road race will kick off in Denmark at 9 a.m. local time with the elite women’s race slated for 1:30 p.m.

Stay tuned to for complete reports from each day of racing. For more information, including schedules and start lists, please visit the event’s official website.

View photos of the day’s racing in USA Cycling’s photo gallery.

Watch the action on Universal Sports both on television and online: Saturday, September 24th 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. – Road Race: Men’s Under 23 (one-day delay) & Women’s Elite (LIVE) and Sunday, September 25th 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. – Road Race: Men’s Elite (LIVE).


2011 UCI Road World Championships
Copenhagen, Denmark
September 19–25, 2011

Junior Women’s 70-kilometer Road Race
1. Lucy Garner (GBR) 1:26.17
2. Jessy Druyts (BEL) “
3. Christina Siggaard (DEN) “

41. Addyson Albershardt (Matthews, N.C./FLYING PIGS) + 0.10
43. Alexis Ryan (Ventura, Calif./Team TIBCO II) + 0.10
DNF Grace Alexander (Boise, Idaho/BYRDS)

U23 Men’s 168-kilometer Road Race
1. Arnaud Demare (FRA) 3:52.16
2. Adrien Petit (FRA) “
3. Andrew Fenin (GBR) “

87. Jacob Rathe (Portland, Ore./Garmin-Chipotle) “
92. Robert Bush (Louisville, Ky./Kentucky Flyers-Texas Roadhouse) +0.19
93. Gavin Mannion (Dedham, Mass./Trek-Livestrong) +0.19
127. Ian Boswell (Bend, Ore./Trek-Livestrong) +05:58
128. Joe Dombrowski (Marshall, Va./Trek-Livestrong) +05:58

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